6 Steps to the Perfect Color Palette
If you’re considering updating a room in your home or settling into a new residence, you might be curious about how to choose the right color scheme for a specific area.
Professionals in the fields of design and painting offer a wealth of advice on key considerations for picking the ideal color scheme for your room. Here are six steps to take: assessing the lighting conditions in the room, identifying your personal design preferences, testing various paint shades, and much more!
1. Evaluate Your Space
Various rooms require unique color schemes. Before making a choice, start by asking yourself several questions to guide your selection.
• What is the room’s purpose?
• How will the area be utilized?
• Who will spend the most time in it?
Next, evaluate the room as it is now and decide on the items that will stay.
Having these answers will assist you in refining your color options. For instance, a home workspace featuring a deep brown built-in could lead to different color considerations than a children’s play area adorned with vibrant accents.
2. Keep Lighting in Mind
Lighting plays a crucial role in determining the right color choices for a room, as it’s key for maximizing the room’s functionality.
Colors can look different at various times of the day due to lighting conditions. For example, morning light tends to be bright and crisp, while afternoon light is generally warmer and more direct. During the evening, you’ll likely depend on artificial lighting.
Also think about when you’ll be using the room most frequently. If the space lacks natural light, you might want to go for lighter, cooler shades that give the illusion of openness. On the other hand, if the room is flooded with sunlight through large windows, you could opt for medium to dark hues to create balance.
3. Find Your Style
Figuring out your preferred style and look is an important next step. If you’re unsure, you can gather ideas from your travels, personal photographs, and the dominant colors you encounter daily.
A quick survey of your home and wardrobe can also offer insights. Pay attention to colors you’re naturally drawn to in clothes, textiles, and art as potential options for your living areas.
Even if you don’t think of yourself as particularly color-savvy, this exercise might reveal otherwise. Most people have at least one color subtly appearing in their living space, suggesting they might not yet know how to effectively use it.
For instance, you might find recurring themes of greens and blues in your artwork or inspiration boards that you hadn’t considered before. Don’t hesitate to incorporate these into your color narrative; you might find them to be exactly what you want.
What’s most important, however, is not to let the preferences of others overly influence your choices. Color selection is a personal matter, and you should feel comfortable with the hues you choose.
Lastly, aim to ensure that the chosen style complements your space. Consider crafting a mood board that starts with a few colors. Assess how these shades either harmonize or clash with existing elements in the room. Typically, a palette of three to five colors serves as a reliable guide for a balanced color scheme.
4. Pick Paint Hues Last
While you might be inclined to choose a paint color you love and immediately start painting your walls, it’s advisable to hold off on the paint until later in the decorating journey.
Selecting or altering furniture and decor to fit a pre-chosen paint color can be both difficult and costly. It’s generally easier and more cost-effective to choose paint that complements your existing furnishings and decorations.
5. Follow the 60:30:10 Rule
Building on the previous advice, it’s a good idea to adhere to the 60:30:10 guideline in interior design. This rule suggests allocating 60 percent of the room to the primary color, 30 percent to a secondary color, and the remaining 10 percent for an accent color.
To create a unified look across multiple rooms, consider using recurring colors but in varying proportions. For instance, a color that makes up 60 percent of one room could serve as an accent color or feature wall in a neighboring space.
6. Get Paint Samples
Before diving into your painting project, it’s crucial to test out paint samples, especially since lighting can dramatically affect how a color appears.
Observe the sample color at different times of the day and on various walls, if possible. You might discover an undesirable undertone in your initial choice, and adjustments can be made accordingly.
Also, compare the paint swatch with your room’s furniture and flooring to make sure it harmonizes with those elements.